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Old 10-31-2010, 09:05 AM   #1
drakkos
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Resurrecting Imaginary Realities

Those of us who are getting on a bit may remember that Pinkfish@Discworld used to edit a MUD based ezine called Imaginary Realities. It stopped running late in 2001 (although archives are available, for example at Tharsis Gate unofficial republication of e-magazine Imaginary Realities).

Is there any interest at all amongst y'all in making an attempt to resurrect it? Basically, what I want to know is:

1) Who would be interested in writing articles for it?
2) Who would be interested in reading it?
3) What would you like to see covered in such a publication?

IR was focused quite tightly on MUDs back in the day, but I think a more general publication of MUDs and MMOs would be pretty cool, running a gamut of subjects from technical to social to historical.

I've spoken with Pinkfish about this in the past and received his blessing, but really the question is - how much interest is there out there?

Drakkos.
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Old 10-31-2010, 10:28 AM   #2
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Re: Resurrecting Imaginary Realities

I would be willing to contribute a small number of articles per year to a project like this, but there's no way I could support a major role. I do think it's a good idea if you can find the people.

-dentin
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Old 10-31-2010, 12:00 PM   #3
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Re: Resurrecting Imaginary Realities

Imaginary Realities was a superb article resource for muds, but one day it simply closed down. While Puma has made the archives available, the copyright situation is unclear and the images are missing.

It would be very nice to see it resurrected, but the idiom "once bitten, twice shy" springs to mind. What if you get bored of it after a few weeks/months/years? Would you hand it on to someone else, or would it close down again? If it does close, will the licensing conditions at least allow other people to post the full archives complete with images?
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Old 10-31-2010, 01:11 PM   #4
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Re: Resurrecting Imaginary Realities

I would certainly be interested in reading it and perhaps supporting it in some other fashion. The more MU* related, lively resources out here on the 'net, the better.
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Old 10-31-2010, 06:30 PM   #5
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Re: Resurrecting Imaginary Realities

Quote:
Originally Posted by drakkos View Post
IR was focused quite tightly on MUDs back in the day, but I think a more general publication of MUDs and MMOs would be pretty cool,
It's a good idea, I would read it and maybe write articles, but IMO it should stick to the core value of MUDs, that they're text-based. There's already plenty of press on MMOs, and while MMO articles could attract a broader readership, I feel that what would make the publication special would be a MUD focus, not a MUD/MMO focus.

If you do want to attract a broader readership, I suggest branching out into browser-based games -- Echo Bazaar would be a great example -- and interactive/hypertext/CYOA fiction.
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Old 10-31-2010, 06:46 PM   #6
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Re: Resurrecting Imaginary Realities

I might. Especially after November. I've also worked as an editor and slush reader for a couple of literary journals if that's of any help to you.
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Old 11-01-2010, 08:08 PM   #7
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Re: Resurrecting Imaginary Realities

Quote:
Originally Posted by KaVir View Post
It would be very nice to see it resurrected, but the idiom "once bitten, twice shy" springs to mind. What if you get bored of it after a few weeks/months/years? Would you hand it on to someone else, or would it close down again? If it does close, will the licensing conditions at least allow other people to post the full archives complete with images?
Those are all very reasonable questions, but a fair way down from the point where I am at the moment (which is, 'let's see if there's an interest in it'). At the moment, all I really have is a long-standing desire (of several years), and time I am willing to put into getting the thing up and running again. I know one of the big reasons it stopped the last time was a lack of contributions, so ensuring that there is at least enough of a flow of articles to get over the first short while of operations is I think the most important thing.

Sustainability of a resource like this is obviously key, and a single point of failure (myself) isn't a great indicator for that. But, we live in more collaborative times now and there are technologies and techniques out there that can help manage that. I'm certainly not precious about control in that sense, but I do also think that there needs to be someone who pushes the thing hard enough to get it rolling or it'll never actually start. If people are interested in taking a more active role than submitting articles (editing, etc), then I'd definitely be very keen on making it a wider community effort than just l'il ol' me.

For licensing, I have no strong opinions other than it should be as free as possible while still maintaining the rights of the author and whoever happens to be editing it. But it's intended to be a communal resource, so some measure of community consensus would be important as far as that goes.

So, that's a bit rambly (because your questions are a bit ahead of me), but to summarise:

* I'd be perfectly willing to share editorial control to ensure that there isn't a single point of failure.
* I'd like to see the use of a licence that maintains authorial ownership while also granting this New Imaginary Realities the right to modify, adapt and distribute as is necessary.

There's a lot of groundwork needed to be done to actually move from 'expressions of interest' to 'an actual thing that is actually a thing', but the responses thus far have been encouraging as to whether it's worth putting in that work.

Regards,
Drakkos.
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Old 04-22-2012, 10:20 AM   #8
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Re: Resurrecting Imaginary Realities

OMG necro

Anyway, I don't usually post my own blog links around except to my facebook/G+ pages, but this one touches on the topic of Imaginary Realities - last time I got discouraged by the relative lack of feedback along the lines of 'I'd be interested in contributing', but I think now is the time to revisit the topic once more with a broader, more inclusive scope. I've got some expressions of interest already, and I'm putting together a sustainable working group that will collaborate on scoping out the project.

Anyway, Epitaph Developer Blogs - Mud Commentary - Resurrecting Imaginary Realities - A Call To Arms - if anyone is interested, I'd appreciate you dropping me a line on the address in the post. And if you know people who might be interested, if you could pass the link on I'd appreciate it.

Regards,
Drakkos.
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Old 05-04-2012, 03:37 AM   #9
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Re: Resurrecting Imaginary Realities

Interest in resurrecting Imaginary Realities has been strong. Those who contacted me have been putting their thoughts and such forward at our forums (Imaginary Realities • Index page), and one of the working group has summarised a number of these discussions on the wiki (Imaginary Realities).

We're going to be scoping out the plans for the rebirth for another couple of weeks - if people are interested and want to get involved, there's still time.

Regards,
Drakkos.
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